As 2019 approaches, it's important to think about the steps you need to take to ensure that you are setting yourself up for a productive, effective, and enjoyable 2019.
At Personalized Solutions, we advise all of our clients to start simple and complete our 7 first steps towards organized living worksheet. You only get 24-hours in each day, let's make sure you are spending each moment where it REALLY counts.
Creating your organization strategy is a personal yet vital part to setting yourself up for success.
Fail to plan, plan to fail.
We are here to help, let's make 2019 AMAZING!
The San Francisco Bay Area...known for so many wonderful things all in one stunning region. Some of the nations top universities (Stanford, Berkeley), best Micheline star restaurants (The French Laundry), elite vineyards (Newton, Castello di Amorosa), incredible hotels (The Palace & The Four Seasons), and so much more!
I arrived Thursday evening and checked in to The Palace Hotel, conveniently located on Market Street. Not so convenient that ALL Marriott properties throughout San Francisco had worker strikes going on 24 hours a day that were incredibly noisy and at times, upsetting. Despite that, the hotel itself was beautiful and had great open spaces. The staff that was working was gracious and overall, the hotel was an enjoyable experience. It's location being my favorite part.
EAT & DRINK:
Thursday evening I enjoyed dinner at a gorgeous Japanese restaurant, Ozumo. The bar scene was vibrant and the views of the Golden Gate Bridge were incredible! My favorite dishes were the: hanabi, gindaro, & hamachi maki.
Friday was spent in Napa enjoying the gorgeous scenery and sipping some exquisite wines. First stop was Castello di Amorosa which is a vineyard and a castle. The wine was decent but the main event was definitely the castle tour and perfect picture ops.
Up next was lunch at Charter Oak. Charter Oak is affiliated with the famous, Michelin star Meadwood restaurant and resort in Napa and the meal did not disappoint. The high ceilings made the environment open and relaxing, and the best part - drinking wine outside by the fire pits after the meal. A definite must try in St. Helena.
After lunch I ventured onto the reservation only, tour and tasting at Newton. Newton specializes in unfiltered wines and is now owned by LVMH. The tour was much shorter than Castello's but the wine and story behind the vineyard was far better.
A few others I've been to previously but didn't visit this trip are... Chandon, Mumm, Rutherford, Mondavi, & V. Sattui.
You really can't go wrong in California wine country. ;)
Saturday evening I dined at the fabulous Mourad. This Moroccan fusion was absolutely my favorite meal of the trip. My favorites were: scallops, short ribs, & beets. It's also right next to the Palace hotel making it a must-do if you're staying in the area.
Saturday morning I did one of my favorites, Flywheel Sports. A quick ten minute walk from the hotel. My instructor was good, the class was packed, and the bikes were new! Afterwards I grabbed a celery juice from Joe & The Juice, my favorite Manhattan juicery/coffee shop. (Waiting for them to pop-up in Phoenix and Dallas!)
Sunday morning I hopped into a Soulcycle class so I could compare/contrast to the Flywheel experience. This was a bit of a let down...the instructor wasn't the best, the class was nearly empty, and I left with much to be desired. However - next door was Pressed Juicery, my favorite SoCal juice spot so I was able to grab a celery juice and continue on with my final day in SF.
Weather: Perfection. Barely needed a jacket (which is rare for breezy SF!)
Dates: October 25-28th 2018
Meals: All incredible and highly recommendable
Hotel: Great location, only downside was the city wide strike
Vineyards: It's wine, you can't lose
Workouts: Stick with Flywheel > Soulcycle
Coffee: Joe & The Juice = 100%!
Any questions about San Francisco trip planning, email us!
We are here to help make your travel stylish, organized, and luxurious.
There is nothing quite like jumping out of your comfort zone in a massive way...
Let me start with point A: I am not a fan of being filmed. Much like most people, I am self conscious about how I look, the way my voice sounds, and of what others will think. I am human and even though I am mostly confident, there are always those scary, shadows of doubt.
2018 has been the year of getting comfortable with being uncomfortable and that is what has led us into this new realm...videos!
I hope you will follow along as we provide business and lifestyle tips that are geared to help you lead a more stylish, organized, and productive life. Each video is aimed to come back to the overarching theme of:
Bear with me as I get used to this, nothing is ever close to perfect the first time around but I know that if I stick with it, things can only go up from here.
You can look forward to learning a lot more about what we do at Personalized Solutions, what my struggles as an entrepreneur are, some of my favorite lifestyle tips, travel destinations, and so much more!
As always, I appreciate your support (please subscribe!) and I look forward to connecting with everyone even more!
Lots of Love,
Jessica Leila Adnani
The PS ladies recently went on a weekend getaway to Austin, TX and had an amazing time! If you are looking for a fun, new place to explore look no further. Check out all the fun things we were able to do and see!
Where to Stay:
Sixth Street is definitely a great place to be. You’ll hear a lot about it if you research a vacation to Austin. Also known as “Dirty Sixth Street”, it has all the restaurants, bars and live music you could want. West Sixth is a bit trendier and has a range of ages, while East Sixth has a grungier, younger crowd. If you choose to stay a couple streets away from here you are still able to walk everywhere, but we wanted to be right in the thick of things.
Hotel Recommendations: The W, The Line, Aloft
Where to Eat:
The food was wonderful! There is such a mix of cuisines and atmospheres. No matter what you are in the mood for, you’ll find it in Austin. Here’s a few of our favorite spots:
Eureka – 6th Street
This place had the most amazing, glazed brussels sprouts. (We’re still dreaming about them.) We sat at the bar and ordered a few appetizers and a couple glasses of wine for happy hour. Great price, casual feel, awesome decor, friendly service.
Walton’s Fancy and Staple – 6th Street
This was the cutest breakfast/lunch/coffee spot! We loved it so much the first day we came back the next day. It had a vintage, homey feel to it. The decor is black, white and natural woods with rustic touches everywhere. They sell plants and flowers alongside their chalkboard menu full of fresh entrees, coffee drinks and pastries. The prices were very reasonable too. You order at the counter and can take it to-go or grab a table and wait for them to bring out your food.
Fixe – 5th Street
This is where we went for our romantical date. The atmosphere in here was amazing as well! There were tabletops made from giant, wood slabs, candlelit booths, and bistro lights strung under a pergola. The upscale, Southern food was to die for. We ordered fried chicken, beet salad, crispy catfish and heirloom tomatoes with goat cheese. We were gushing over how fresh everything tasted. We definitely recommend this for a date night or when you’re feeling fancy, dark, romantic vibes.
What to Do:
Morning starter: SoulCycle Austin + Royal Blue Grocery latte
After that, we figured a great way to spend our Saturday afternoon was biking around Barton Springs. We knew we wanted to ride bikes around the city and explore but weren't sure where to start. A local recommended Barton Springs and it did not disappoint. We used the Jump app and paid $4 for an hour of leisurely biking. These bikes are awesome because they are part electric and give you a tiny boost every time you pedal. We rode on a tree-covered path around the water and saw people enjoying tubing, paddle boarding, picnicking and more. We’ve already decided when we go back to Austin we’re going to spend an entire afternoon paddle boarding and lounging here.
Where to Party:
Ah, the best for last. Austin has amazing nightlife and a wide variety of bars. As we mentioned above, Sixth Street has lots of bars and live music, but has a bit of a grunge factor. Still a lot of fun, but we preferred the ever-so-popular Rainey Street. It is the cutest street, lined with old houses turned into bars. Every bar has a front patio dripping in strung, bistro lights. They were all packed with friendly handsome locals and tourists. They all had great music, upbeat atmospheres, but very comfortable and inviting at the same time. Here were some of the best places to grab a drink:
We also went to Soundwave, a pool party that takes place every Sunday at the W Austin. It had a rooftop pool on the 4th floor with an awesome DJ, friendly staff and great people watching. This was the perfect way to wrap up our amazing weekend.
Have you been to Austin? Let me know your favorite spots and we’ll definitely check them out when we go back. (Um, can that be right now??)
Karen Nowicki, the founder of Phoenix Business Radio X and I met in December of 2017 when I was fortunate enough to be a guest on her and JoAnn Holland's show, Ladies Leadership Circle.
After that first meeting, I knew Karen was a Phoenix business leader that I wanted to know more about.
Karen began her career as a teacher for the Kyrene School district. When it came time to do her masters, she decided against an educational leadership program and instead went with a masters in organization management. Her studies led her deeper into business, thus propelling her into an integrative coaching certificate which resulted in a new career as a consultant and coach.
She spent eight years building a coaching practice that was both personal and professional. She was also the co-owner of a social media marketing company, 99 Dollar Social. 1.5 years ago she sold the company which helped her husband fulfill his dreams in opening his own auto shop, Chandler Auto Repair and Service.
Karen then decided to hire her own business coach to determine what her next move was going to be. She had been so successful with the sale of her company, she desired guidance on what was next in fulfilling her journey. Through this coach she was challenged to do a podcast.
"I wanted to find a way to meet new people that I wanted to work with. My coach said, you've got 48 hours and I want you to research podcasting and do your first podcast, even if you don't do another one - at least you'll know if this is a good fit. So I found Business Radio X and I knew right away this was who I wanted to work with. They are all about three things - accelerating relationships, increasing visibility, and creating quality content. For me, it was more than just a podcast, it was opening another opportunity for revenue."
Karen's radio empire began June 5th 2017. (Happy Anniversary!!!) She was licensed to be Business Radio X in the Southwest with the first studio being the Phoenix location.
"The idea is not only for me to be in front of business leaders, but to give that opportunity to other business owners through hosting their own shows at the studio. In less than a year we now have nine sponsors, business owners who host and sponsor their own shows, and as of June 4th we are moving into a new home with MAC6. At 53, this is the most exciting thing that I have done so far. It is a legacy business that I can either sell or give to my children. This is the opportunity to have an exit plan."
Karen is certainly building an empire. Her shows are listened to by thousands every week and her expansion plans throughout Arizona are in the works. She also knows nearly every business leader in Phoenix, proving she is a woman to know and watch.
Karen, thank you for your leadership in Arizona's business community. You are a beautiful human being inside and out and we love collaborating with you.
Follow Karen and Phoenix Business Radio:
Scott Parker is an Arlington, Virginia businessman who has accomplished more by the age of 35 then most do in a lifetime.
I met Scott years ago at a bar in Arlington when out with friends. He was really nice and mentioned he owned our neighborhood hot spot, A-Town and that my friends and I should check it out for brunch. In the years to follow, Parker has gone on to be a part owner in eleven different establishments throughout the DC, MD, VA metro.
Five restaurants: A-Town, Don Tito, Don Taco, Barley Mac, The GOAT
Three VaporFi franchises
Two DogThrive locations
One original concept boxing gym: BASH Boxing
To say this guy is busy is an understatement. Social media has given me the ability to lurk on Scott's day-to-day and that is what led me to asking for this interview. He wakes up every day around 5am, gets a workout in, and begins his daily to-do list. He is also very family oriented which we can all appreciate, I know how hard it is to balance work and family.
So let's dig in!
You started at A-Town and then expanded your reach into all different arenas, let's talk about the timelines and motivations.
"A-Town opened in August of 2012, Don Tito March 2015, Don Taco March 2016, Barley Mac March 2016, and the GOAT November 2017. The DogThrive concept is an original one, created from scratch. We have two locations, one in Annapolis and one in Gambrills, opened in November 2016. Vaporfi is a franchise based out of Miami and I own a part of three locations in the DMV, opened December 2014. BASH boxing is an original concept, we are planning on two Arlington locations - one in Rosslyn set to open in July and one in Ballston, hopefully in December.
I wanted to get into other small business industries and concepts. Each new industry I went into I was operations and marketing guy, I'd then partner with genius level talent, for example, with DogThrive my partner has trained thousands of dogs.
VaporFi was a trend thing, saw a lot of people doing really well in it, overall it's done well.
Bash boxing is an original concept, and I'm unsure if we will franchise it or not."
Tell me more about BASH, I am really into boxing right now so this concept excites me.
"Our first location will have a class max of 36 people, classes are 45 minutes long, and there is 1 instructor. I chose boxing because it's a workout that builds confidence and helps people get aggression out. It's really hot right now and it's different than what is out there."
You've achieved a lot, what are the top three things that you do or things you'd offer as advice to others who want to achieve the same kind of success?
"The intention behind everything I do is to bring light to everyone who steps foot in here. When you come in for this ride, it's challenging, but our intent is to have you become something bigger than yourself. Never coast. Who is a never coaster? Someone who refuses to give up. Refuses to settle for the easy route. Accepts any challenge. Is REAL. We gear our life towards the never coaster."
Meet Kristina Girod.
Head Instructor of Flywheel Scottsdale, and Lululemon Brand Ambassador. Have you seen those abs? Clear to see why! However, Kristina's allure is far deeper than just physique. She is also the most inspiring instructor I've ever met. After my first class, I told her I'd be writing a letter to HQ because she belongs at the master instructor level, she is just THAT good at her job.
As you know, I recently moved to Arizona and when I arrived I made it my mission to try out all of the top rated gyms and of course, visit one of my favorite East Coast studios - Flywheel Sports.
Flywheel is a competitive spin class. They are HQ'd in NYC and I became addicted to them while living in DC. Fortunately for me, a new studio popped up in Scottsdale a few months prior to my arrival and thus led me to Kristina.
There are so many fitness professionals in the world, it can be hard to stand out - so when you find someone who does, you just want to learn more.
How old are you and where are you from?
"33, Flagstaff Arizona."
How'd you wind up in Scottsdale?
"I am one of six siblings, I moved after college, and now my entire family is also here."
Tell us about your path into fitness.
"I was an athlete growing up, I tore my ACL at age 19 playing volleyball and got out of sports. Gained weight and after college, got into working out. I lost 20lbs and got shredded. I started working out at 24hour Fitness lifting and doing turbo kickboxing classes. I then became a turbo kickbox instructor and taught for two years. That was too intense on the knees which is what led me to spin.
I started teaching cycling in 2014 at Lifetime Fitness, then moved to Fit Republic, and then the Madison Improvement Club. Spin was just my side gig. I was working full-time for Yelp in their franchising division."
So how'd you land Flywheel?
It's finally official!
March 15th we celebrated the launch of Personalized Solutions Scottsdale and it was perfection!
The event was held at the stunning Museum of the West in Old Town Scottsdale - the only Smithsonian affiliate on the West Coast. We were joined by the President of the Museum, Mike Fox as well as multiple members of the board. We had over 100 local residents in attendance, media coverage from So Scottsdale! magazine, and a fantastic life in luxury raffle with over $1800 of luxurious goodies - including a stay at our favorite Scottsdale resort, The Andaz!
In addition to celebrating our launch, we honored the Women of the Year for Women of Scottsdale and East Valley Women. Two phenomenal ladies that inspire in everything they do, Margaret and Nancy, congratulations!
Truth be told, I had never stepped foot in Arizona until September 28th 2017. A DC client had asked me to attend a meeting on her behalf and off I went.
My first evening at the Andaz I attended a charity event that was being hosted by the hotel and that is when I met JoAnn Holland and Debbie Gaby. We chatted throughout the event and went to dinner together afterwards. They invited me to attend another charity event two nights later, Horses and Hot Rods. This event was the pre-event for The Arizona Heart Association's Heart Ball in November. That evening I met more wonderful people and decided I'd return for the Heart Ball.
In November I had such a great time that I began seriously considering Arizona as the next city for a Personalized Solutions office...it mixed fantastic weather, kind people, and a desert, cosmopolitan vibe. The Phoenix economy is also one of the fastest growing in our nation, another perk!
During this trip I attended a Women of Scottsdale luncheon as well as an East Valley Women meeting. I met more lovely women and decided that I needed to return again in December to really decide if this was the next step for my business.
In December I returned, signed a lease, and began the transition planning from DC to AZ.
End of January, we landed in Phoenix and haven't looked back!
I am so thrilled to be a Phoenician and a contributing member of this vibrant business community. Thank you again to everyone who helped welcome us this month, we sincerely appreciate your time and support.
For more photos, click here!
Meet Chef Ben Rubin, Founder of AllSpice Hospitality.
Chef Ben and I have been working together to create perfectly planned parties and menus to my clientele for the past three years. He is hands down one of my favorite people to work with (not only is his food delicious, but he is hilarious!) a rare but great combination in the hospitality industry.
He began to refine his journey into professionally cooking, seven years ago with a 22 month program at the Culinary Institute of America in New York. During his time at the Institute, he completed two externships. The first, working in the kitchen on a Celebrity Cruise Line ship for three months, producing meals for 2,200 people a day! During this time he saw 14 Caribbean countries, worked with staff that represented 86 countries, on a boat of 5,000+ people.
After his time on the ship, Ben went to Atlanta where he worked at one of the top Greek restaurants in the country, Kyma. He spent ten months there and loved every second of it.
Upon completing school, Chef Ben moved to Brazil where he spent a year courting his wife, soaking up the culture, and working in a sushi restaurant. (Quite the variety of experiences)
After Brazil, he landed back in Washington, D.C. where he worked for Blacksalt (one of my favorite restaurants), for two years.
Chef Ben was done working for others and that is when AllSpice Hospitality was born.
No, I'm not MAD at you. It's the name of the gym, silly.
Now you're wondering, what is this gym phenomenon and why haven't I heard of it or tried it?
MADabolic stands for:
Simply put: each daily workout is designed around one of those three driving concepts and you are never completing the same workout twice.
Last week while back in DC visiting our clients, I had the pleasure of not only squeezing in five MAD classes but also getting to know the owner of the Arlington/DC location, Corbin Jennings.
Corbin began his career, like many, in corporate America. He studied economics in college, worked in banking for a minute, then logistics for Lowe's and Under Armour.
It was during his time at Under Armour when he realized he needed a life change and could no longer sit at a desk for 60+ hours a week, staring at excel sheets. He was bored to death.
After doing the MAD workouts in Charlotte, North Carolina, Corbin decided to throw caution to the wind and began looking into opening a MADabolic of his own in the DC metro.
Two years later, at age 28, Corbin successfully became the owner of the MADabolic franchise in Arlington, Virginia. Pretty impressive...
How did you go from a corporate minion to business owner and what were the challenges you faced?
"I was always willing to take risks. The really challenging part has been not knowing the 99% of the operational side - taxes, licenses, etc. I am constantly in unfamiliar area. Prior to becoming a MADabolic owner, I was in roles where I could become really proficient at something and master it. Entrepreneurship is not like that.
What led you to pick MADabolic out of all the fitness franchises out there?
"I was a member in North Carolina for six months before deciding to franchise. I fell in love with the workout - genuine strength and athletic training. It was far superior to everything else I'd come across."
What was your fitness background prior?
"I was an athlete growing up and played soccer competitively but I was not a personal trainer or coach."
So how did you become one?
"There is a four to twelve week intensive onboarding program for trainers that takes place at the HQ in Charlotte. I completed that and I am also ACE certified.
WOW! That is a long training program, why so tedious? Explain the hiring process.
"There is a 25% fail rate for the onboarding program, it is designed to challenge. Before sending people to Charlotte, we have our own hiring process. We want people who can move REALLY well. At first, I was hiring a lot of former crossfitters, but as I've gotten further along, I've realized they aren't very dedicated. Now I am looking for passion and dedication to the program, attention to detail, and the ability to move REALLY well.
What has your turnover rate been like?
"We have only lost two trainers since opening. We had two potentials we sent to Charlotte but they didn't end up moving forward. In the gym industry there is a notoriously high turn over rate."
Let's dig into the workout...